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Borrowed from Middle French indulgence, or its source, Latin indulgentia.


  • IPA(key): /ɪnˈdʌl.d͡ʒəns/
  • (file)
  • Hyphenation: in‧dul‧gence


indulgence (countable and uncountable, plural indulgences)

  1. The act of indulging.
    • 1654, H[enry] Hammond, Of Fundamentals in a Notion Referring to Practise, London: [] J[ames] Flesher for Richard Royston, [], →OCLC:
      will all they that either through indulgence to others or fondness to any sin in themselves, substitute for repentance any thing that is less than a sincere, uniform resolution of new obedience
    • 1922, Maneckji Nusservanji Dhalla, Zoroastrian Civilization[1], page 220:
      As indulgence in several wives depended mainly on the length of a man's purse, the poor naturally contented themselves with monogamy.
  2. Tolerance.
  3. The act of catering to someone's every desire.
  4. A wish or whim satisfied.
    • 2013, Jocelyn Samara D., Rain, volume 1, →ISBN, page 199:
      "In other words, the ONLY indulgences we'll be getting for a while is fixing your wardrobe. This means no new manga. No new games. Nothing. Get used to it."
  5. Something in which someone indulges.
  6. An indulgent act; a favour granted; gratification.
    • a. 1729, John Rogers, The Goodness of God a Motive to Repentance:
      If all these gracious indulgences are without any effect on us, we must perish in our own folly.
  7. (Roman Catholicism) A pardon or release from the expectation of punishment in purgatory, after the sinner has been granted absolution.
    • 2009, Diarmaid MacCulloch, A History of Christianity, Penguin, published 2010, page 555:
      To understand how indulgences were intended to work depends on linking together a number of assumptions about sin and the afterlife, each of which individually makes considerable sense.


Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]



indulgence (third-person singular simple present indulgences, present participle indulgencing, simple past and past participle indulgenced)

  1. (transitive, Roman Catholicism) to provide with an indulgence





indulgence f (plural indulgences)

  1. leniency, clemency
  2. (Roman Catholicism) indulgence

Further reading[edit]